I was delighted to be asked by Sewing World magazine to submit another tutorial, after I had done one last year for their March issue. My latest step by step project is in this months issue, May, and it shows you how to make a patchwork throw out of furnishing fabrics. Although I used only my own fabrics for this project, any furnishing fabrics can be used, so it can be a cheap throw to make if you use up offcuts and remnants. I have used a large scale template for ease, and because furnishing fabrics are much thicker than cotton patchwork fabrics so intricate piecing isn’t so possible! I have also ‘quilted’ it with buttons, so it really is a simple project to make.
So if you fancy having a go at making this throw, then buy yourself the May issue of Sewing World….there is plenty of other great tutorials in there too so it’d be well worth it! And just to show you that this patchwork throw looks fantastic with fabrics other than my own, here is a photograph of another one I made a couple of years ago; the block pattern is slightly different, but very much in the spirit of the Sewing World tutorial. Have a go!
I was asked to participate in this years Marlborough Spring Fair, and I thought it a jolly good idea! Not only will I be able to show my textiles to a new audience down in Wiltshire, but also the fair is being held as a charity event to raise funds for Cancer Research UK. The proceeds from the door (£3.00 entrance fee) and the money raised from the exhibitor fee all go to this wonderful charity.
I have just had a look at the exhibitor list and it looks impressive! Food, crafts, clothing, jewellery and home accessories are all there for a peruse; with over 70 stalls it looks like a very fine day out.
So if you are in the area, come along and support this wonderful event, and also, do come and say hello 🙂
The fair is held on Sunday 9th April at Marlborough College, Marlborough, Wiltshire.
It has been a fair while since I last wrote a post, and I apologise for that, but I have been ever so busy making cushions! I am happy to say that I took quite a few orders at Top Drawer trade show in January; one of the most exciting ones being a reorder from ‘Change Maker’ in Zurich for 115 cushions. So yeah, I’ve been making cushions! It was fantastic to get both new orders and reorders….all most welcome 🙂
Also I have been asked to take part in the new art exhibition at Compton Verney art gallery, Warwickshire, by way of stocking my cushions, notebooks and cards in the shop for the duration of the exhibition. The exhibition is called ‘Creating the Countryside; Thomas Gainsborough to Today’, and I was asked as my textile designs are nature inspired and as I had I sold very well at the Compton Verney Textile Fair last November. I went yesterday and set up my wall space (see above photo)….and a very nice space too! So do go and have a look, and I mean at the art exhibition rather than just my cushions! Compton Verney never fails to please and the setting is just splendid. The exhibition runs from 18th March until the 18th June.
First things first……a Happy New Year to all my customers, followers and people just having a look! I hope we all have a peaceful, hugely enjoyable and prosperous new year!
Well it’s Top Drawer time again, the trade fair held at Olympia, Kensington between the 15th and 17th January (in a few days time, eek!) I exhibited last year and found it very beneficial, especially as it lead to sales in Zurich. I am excited to bring along my two new designs this year: Natures Beauty and Leaves, so fingers crossed for lots of interest!
The photos above are from last year. It’s great this year though as I have been upgraded with my stand due to an exhibitor pulling out. I’ve now got an end of row stand with lots of room….see you there! Stand CF-31 by the way 🙂
I am delighted to say that I am showing my textiles at ‘Gifted‘ this year, a contemporary Christmas craft fair held at The National Centre for Craft and Design. The centre is located in Sleaford in Lincolnshire, and their showroom is shown above. I will be out in a marquee though with lots of talented crafts persons taking part in their annual Christmas fair, which looks set to be a really good day out! I have heard that it is a very popular and fun event, and I am so excited to be a part of it this year.
It is on next weekend; on the 3rd and 4th December, 10am till 4pm. Please do come along if you happen to be over that way….I look forward to meeting you 🙂
Having had great fun with my floral designs, I decided to do two more designs that were a little different this time. Firstly I went for a leafy design having been inspired by the abundance of rainforest foliage designs in green and white that seem popular at the moment. I love them but I decided to do a more British version! My design features leaves from classic British tree favourites the horse chestnut, oak and lime. I have printed this design onto oatmeal linen to give it a more faded look. I am very pleased with it, It’s turned out just how I envisaged it even before I started drawing.
The second design is very fun! It is called ‘Natures Beauty’ and it features an array of natures delights! Included are birds; a bullfinch, yellow wagtail, and a house martin to be exact, flowers such as a day lily and foxgloves, and also feathers, eggs butterflies to name a few. Oh and a rose chafer beetle….you may not what this in your garden but it is a very pretty beetle!
Both designs are available to buy by the metre and made up into cushions. 18″ and 22″ cushions are listed on the shop page, please contact me if you would like a different size.
I do hope you like these new designs, I’m pretty excited about them!
So next up on the list of fairs is a one day fair at Compton Verney. I visited there many years ago, and I remember a very impressive art collection, stunning park land and a good tearoom! I am delighted to be going back to the house, set in rural Warwickshire, to attend their annual Textile fair where I will be showing the old favourites, along with a couple of new designs.
The fair is on Saturday the 5th November, and takes place from 11am till 5pm. If you live nearby or fancy a day out then I’m sure you will not be disappointed by what you find at Compton Verney. And lets hope for a lovely sunny autumnal day!
My small embroidered cushions always draw attention when seen at exhibitions and fairs, and are one of my most popular items. The texture of the embroidery is what most excites people, and the embellishment of the linen with thread is a wonderful combination giving that texture, as well as colour, pattern and a reflective quality.
I am often asked about the embroidery, and how it is done. I do the embroidery with a digital embroidery machine, one in which I design the embroidery motifs, these then are translated to the machine and the machine then gets on with the job on its own, stitching the patterns onto the fabric (usually while I sit there mesmerised by the process, it’s very meditative! Although the whole idea is for me to be getting on with something else!).
I have several reasons for using a digital machine rather than free machining on a normal sewing machine. Firstly I actually love the texture of the stitch that the digital machine produces, its thick and raised from the fabric, with a wonderfully solid feel. I really don’t think I could get such a stitch quality as this personally if I was to embroider it myself on my sewing machine. The stitch also feels very durable, which is obviously advantageous for my cushions and their longevity, as well as the factor of time and economics. A shorter time in production is reflected in cushion prices, so that is also a big consideration.
So although I get a vast amount of pleasure free hand machining (where I manoeuvre the fabric myself under the sewing machine and ‘draw’ with the thread) I feel that using a digital machine for my cushions is the right course of action in this instant as I just love the stitch that the machine produces, and its quicker. I get very excited when I sit and watch the embroidery process, and see the floral patterns emerge with thread, it never ceases to thrill me!
Presently I have two embroidered designs on my shop page, and more will be added in time, do take a look 🙂
I am currently gearing up for my next fair, which is to be ‘Best of Britannia’ . It is held at Victoria House, Bloomsbury Square, Holborn, London and it takes place from the 30th September till the 2nd October.
I’m very excited to be a part of it, and feel honoured that they found me and thought me appropriate for this fabulous celebration of British brands 🙂
Best of Britannia is where you will find unique British made products from over 150 brands. You will find clothing, footwear, accessories, jewellery, cycling, motoring, home furnishing, foods and much more…..sounds like quite an eclectic mix to me!!
And of course, look out for my cushions and myself on Stand 5! But just to mention, the first day, the 30th Sept is for trade and then the weekend days are retail to public.
A photograph received from my brother last week has prompted me to write this latest post. It is of my father John Bury, and the photograph was apparently taken for Tattler Magazine in 1961.
So I thought that seeing as my dad had had such an interesting career, I would share a little bit of it here.
John Bury was a set, costume and lighting designer. He was born in 1925, and commenced his career in the theatre in the 1950’s when he started work with Joan Littlewoods Theatre Workshop. Subsequently he went on to become Head of Design for the Royal Shakespeare Company and for the National Theatre, from 1973 to 1985. He also created sets for the Royal Opera house and Glyndebourne. He worked closely with Peter Hall for most of this career.
In 1981 my father won two Tony awards for best set design and best lighting for the Broadways production of Peter Shaffer’s Amadeus, although he was nominated for best costume design too! He received an OBE in 1979. I remember as a young girl of 9 going to Buckingham Palace with the family and watching him receive his metal from the Queen mum.
He died in 2000, and so it was such a thrill to see this early photograph of him, one that I hadn’t even seen before. He must have been aged 36, so it was taken before I was born which wasn’t until 1970; it is such a fabulous photo of him as he was starting out on such an amazing career.
My brothers and I had an interesting childhood too, there was a lot of travel! Memorably we spent time in Sydney where my parents (my mother helped my father) put on operas at the Sydney Opera House, we also had a fantastic time in Santa Fe where again they put on an opera at the opera house there. We also spent a lot of our childhood down at Glyndebourne. I must admit I did not take much notice of it all as a child, but I have grown to feel very proud of what my parents have achieved!